Pretty Cure (lost various English pilot dubs of anime franchise; 2000s)


Pretty Cure (pilot dubs)
Japanese DVD cover for the first entry in the franchise, Futari wa Pretty Cure.
Japanese DVD cover for the first entry in the franchise, Futari wa Pretty Cure.
Status Partially Found / Lost / Existence Unconfirmed

Pretty Cure is a magical-girl anime franchise by Toei Animation and Bandai which initially launched in 2004 with Futari wa Pretty Cure. The ongoing property has since inspired countless followup seasons, spinoffs, and theatrical adaptations.

The franchise has spawned two notable English versions: first in 2009, when Toei Animation's US division commissioned an English dub of the first series produced by the Vancouver based Ocean Productions, with voice recording outsourced to their Calgary studio. Then, in 2015, Saban Brands launched an adaptation of 2012/2013's Smile Pretty Cure! as Glitter Force. This moniker was later used for the followup series, Dokidoki! Pretty Cure, which Toei Animation USA launched internationally in 2017 as Glitter Fore: Doki Doki. Both of these productions used voice actors from the Los Angeles area.

However, these are far from the only attempts to bring the franchise to the English speaking world. Toei Animation has attempted to sell Pretty Cure globally since shortly after the property's debut. Multiple pilots for multiple different series have been produced.

Toei Animation

In September 2005, German broadcaster RTL2 aired an English pilot for the original series.[1] This came as a result of the German dub not yet being finished despite the broadcaster's eagerness to run the show.[2] Footage from this broadcast surfaced online, with commentators identifying it as a Los Angeles based production. Stephanie Sheh played Honoka/Cure White and Mepple, Lara Cody was Nagisa/Cure Black, with Doug Stone as the villains.[3]

The next month, Toei Animation USA launched an English language online portal to sell Pretty Cure abroad.[4] The website hosted three videos, which were allegedly the same production used in the German broadcast.[5][6] Both the rips of the German broadcast and the videos hosted on Toei's site have gone offline.

At Anime Expo 2007, Toei Animation USA intended to screen a dubbed episode of the 2004/2005 entry Pretty Cure: Max Heart.[7] However, the company ended up screening episodes 30 and 31 of the original series.[6] While there was some speculation the dub used for the event was the Singaporean one, an attendee claimed to have heard Stephanie Sheh as Nagisa.[8] The same person also stated that Toei was showcasing an English dubbed version of the 2006/2007 series Pretty Cure: Splash Stars, but did not specify whether it was an episode or a trailer.

In 2009, Toei Animation Europe began streaming an English trailer for the first series.[9] It features an unknown cast separate to that of the Ocean Productions dub with non-localized names. It's not known if this trailer has any relation to the earlier pilots.

Toei Animation Europe trailer

Ocean Productions

Around the time the company worked on the first television series, Toei Animation USA commissioned Ocean Productions to create a promotional video for Pretty Cure: Splash Stars. The promo was recorded at Bluewater Studios, the company's Calgary office.[10] An English dubbed trailer for this series is available on Toei Animation Europe's website, though it's not known if this is the one Ocean created.[11] If it is, the company likely also did work on the 2007/2008 entry Yes! Pretty Cure 5 as an English trailer for that series is available on Toei Europe's website, with the same unidentified narrator.[12] It's not known if Ocean's involvement in later Pretty Cure series was limited solely to promotional trailers. Nor is it known if their work was showcased at Anime Expo 2007.

Pretty Cure: Splash Star English Trailer
Yes! Pretty Cure 5 English Trailer

William Winckler Productions

In 2011, Toei Animation Japan commissioned the Los Angeles-based William Winckler Productions to create three English language pilots of 2007/2008's Yes! Pretty Cure 5.[13] The dubs featured, among others, Aurelia Scheppers, Laura Siegel, Alexa Kahn, and Marieve Herington.[14] These pilots have not surfaced in any form.

4Kids Entertainment

New York-based 4Kids Entertainment announced that they had acquired the license to the original Pretty Cure series at the 2006 New York Comic-Con.[15] At the event, the company confirmed the series would air on their FOX 4KidsTV Saturday morning block in the fall of that year. However, that never came to pass. In 2008, the company officially relinquished the rights to the series back to Toei.[16] Shortly after, Toei sold Pretty Cure to the Canadian broadcaster YTV, which resulted in the Ocean Productions dub of the first series.[17]

4Kids never publicly stated why they dropped the series, though it's been speculated the poor performance of the company's other magical girl anime, Mew Mew Power and Magical Do-Re-Mi may have dissuaded them from continuing forward with Pretty Cure.[18] It has also been speculated but never confirmed, that the company produced an internal pilot dub for the series.

To this day, no footage or audio of 4Kids' English dub of the series has been released to the public, and it's unknown if there was any work done on the dub in the first place.

Saban Brands

Prior to launching the Glitter Force adaptation, Saban Brands had sold their version of the Smile Pretty Cure! as Gangnam Girls in 2013.[19] It's not known if the company commissioned any production work for the series when it was under this title.

See also

  • Pretty Cure and Pretty Cure: Max Heart - The first two entries in the franchise received a complete English dub produced exclusively for the South East Asian market. No footage of it has surfaced.

References

  1. ENGLISH DUBBED PRETTY CURE CLIPS Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  2. RTL2 wants tomboys, not girly girls Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  3. Pretty Cure dubbed - Crystal Acids Note: The comment lists pseudonyms for the first two actors. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  4. Pretty Cure - Official Site for Business Opportunities Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  5. Pretty Cure - Trailers Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  6. 6.0 6.1 What is Toei Animation's Problem? Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  7. Pretty Cure Max Heart... Dubbed?! Premiere? At Anime Expo? Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  8. Pretty Cure Max Heart... Dubbed?! Premiere? At Anime Expo? Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  9. Pretty Cure | Toei Animation Europe Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  10. BLUEWATER STUDIOS Note: To view the source, click on "Production" and then "Pilots/Promos." Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  11. Pretty Cure Splash Star | Toei Animation Europe Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  12. Yes! Pretty Cure 5 | Toei Animation Europe Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  13. Xros Wars Pilot Dub Info Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  14. Pretty Cure 5 (TV Series 2011 - ) Full Cast & Crew - IMDb Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  15. 4KIDS LICENSES 'PRETTY CURE' ANIME SERIES Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  16. 4KIDS DROPS 'PRETTY CURE' ANIME Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  17. Toei sells Pretty Cure to YTV Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  18. ASK JOHN: WHAT HAPPENED TO THE AMERICAN RELEASE OF PRETTY CURE? Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  19. Saban Plans New Superhero Series Retrieved October 30, 2017.

Comments


avatar

Anon

9 months ago
Score -1++
Oh No! 4kids!? Let's let this one stay lost  :-)
avatar

Anonymous user #1

6 months ago
Score 0++
  • sigh* I wish ppl liked Precure over here. Sailor moon is so overrated.
avatar

Mimitchi33

1 months ago
Score 0++
I used to, until I got into idol anime.
avatar

Echofox

6 months ago
Score 0++
Should have existence unconfirmed in the thread title. There's also the existing but completely MIA Singapore dub.
avatar

Anonymous user #2

5 months ago
Score 0++
I agree with you there because there are so many conflicting stories on wheter or not this series even got started being dubbed by 4Kids.
avatar

Anonymous user #3

3 months ago
Score 0++
Smile pre cure was dubbed and turned into glitter force by Netflix and it sucks
avatar

Mimitchi33

1 months ago
Score 0++
I found Glitter Force super annoying (due to the stating the obvious during the transformations and the constant dimming of the screen), but it did have some funny parts and good music. Glitter Force DokiDoki was so much better!
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++
I find it hard to believe the "couldn't find interested broadcasters" part. At the time, 4Kids leased FOX's Saturday morning block. That's how Mew Mew Power and Magical DoReMi aired.
avatar

Mimitchi33

1 months ago
Score 0++
Also, the Toei subtitles were made for a local Hawaiian TV station, which aired this show as part of an hour-long anime block.
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++
To be honest, the evidence seems to point to this dub never existing. Sure, 4Kids acquired the rights to Futari wa Pretty Cure, but that doesn't require them to make a dub. No footage, no screenshots, no Americanized logo, no synopsis, and no press kit. The press kit is especially necessary with modern television, as it shows that there is some completion or intent to complete. The lack of a press kit or a synopsis seems to imply that 4Kids simply forgot about Pretty Cure and let the rights lapse. This is around the time that 4Kids was starting to show symptoms of financial troubles and 4Kids trying to get away from anime dubs to more original shows and looking to other countries for inspiration. This is why we see shows like Viva Pinata, GoGoRiki, and Chaotic and more incomplete or cancelled anime dubs, like Magical DoReMi and Mew Mew Power.
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++

Maybe the article should go from being about a possible 4Kids dub, to the various Pretty Cure pilot dubs? I doubt 4Kids did much with the show, but a pilot wouldn't surprise me. There were also a number of prior pilots from Toei:

- In 2005, an English-dubbed pilot for the first series aired on German TV: https://prec...m/52108.html This was reportedly recorded in Los Angeles: http://www.c...46/#comments In 2006, Toei launched their own website trying to sell the show, allegedly with clips from this pilot: http://web.a...r/index.html https://www....7#post924277 (Samuelp and Quarkboy are the same person) Unfortunately, all of the links to the videos have died. This promo (https://www....=NabKkGICdQo) might've been from it, but not having seen the earlier videos I can't confirm. That video was ripped from Toei Europe's site.

- At Anime Expo 2007, Toei Animation allegedly screened episodes 30 and 31 with an English dub. However, there's some speculation that this was just from the Singaporean dub. No confirmation, though. If you'd like to know more about the Singaporean dub, I made an article for it: http://lostm..._mid-2000s)#

- Sometime around the time the first series was being dubbed, Toei had Ocean produce a promo for Pretty Cure Splash Stars (http://www.b...rstudios.ca/ Production -> Promos/Pilots). If this (https://www....=K_eAeiJBcSE) is that promo, then they also produced one for Yes! Pretty Cure 5 (https://www....=Zp57fj_j-0g same narrator). Both of those videos were ripped from Toei Europe's site.

- Speaking of Yes! Pretty Cure 5, in 2011, Toei Japan commissioned William Winckler Productions to produce a full pilot: http://www.i...credits#cast https://www....=MBrRcxZmv_Y

Plus, who knows what Saban was doing when Glitter Force was Gangnam Girls ...
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++

Apparently, the butchering implied 4Kids, but the mannerisms imply something completely different. If we just had the clips, we can possibly get company info in the closing credits.

Watching that first clip from YouTube, I'll be honest, 4Kids does better dubbing than that. Either that or the audio isn't synced properly. We can at least say that the dubs for Splash Stars and Yes! 5 are partially found. Whether they are from Singapore or a test U.S. dub, I can't tell from the footage.
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++
None of what I linked to should be from 4Kids. A good way to know if the video I posted was from the LA pilot is to get someone who really knows Stephanie Sheh, Deanna Morris and Doug Stone's voices so the can compare.
avatar

Anonymous user #4

1 months ago
Score 0++
Why those actors in particular?
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++

A member on CrystalAcids was able to pick out the voices in the LA pilot that aired on German TV. They said the following: Jennifer Sekiguchi (pseudonym for Stephanie Sheh) – Honoka/Cure White, Mepple Deanna Morris – Nagisa/Cure Black

Doug Stone – The bad guys
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++
I'll try to contact them.
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++
...Gangnam Girls?
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++
When Saban licensed Smile Pretty Cure, their working title for the series was Gangnam Girls: http://www.c...angnam-girls We don't know if they quickly came to their senses or if they actually did some production work under that title.
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++
The first clip from YouTube seems to be the same as one of the clips from Germany. We can probably rule out 4Kids as the creator of this clip, since it doesn't follow standard 4Kids procedure.
avatar

Terry the Cat

1 months ago
Score 0++
The only question being: who made it? The message board seems to think Toei itself made it, rather hurriedly, as a pitch presentation to investors.
avatar

Echofox

1 months ago
Score 0++
The LA pilot was produced for Toei to sell the show to interested parties (broadcasters, merchandise, etc.). There are many LA studios that do anime work (especially in the mid-2000s), so pinpointing that would be almost impossible.
avatar

Echofox

17 days ago
Score 0++
I did a complete overhaul of the article to include every pilot dub of the franchise I'm aware of. Feel free to suggest a new page title because I have no clue as to how to accommodate everything lol.
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